First published on Spiritual Direction
Here are some reflections from professed Carmelite sisters of ‘The Most Sacred Heart’ of Los Angeles on wearing the holy habit of Carmel…
“The wearing of the holy habit is both a blessing and a witness to the faithfulness of God’s love for each of us.” – Sister Jeannine Marie of the Precious Blood, clothed July 16, 1972
“For me, my Holy Habit is a marvellous symbol of the Mercy and Love of God who has called me to such a beautiful and lofty vocation – a friendship relationship with Him that gives meaning to every aspect of my life.” – Sister Carmelina, clothed July 16, 1966.
“A Carmelite without a habit is an incomplete Carmelite. It is part of me.” – Sister Marinette of Saint Joseph, clothed July 1975.
“The Holy Habit of Carmel is a visible reminder not only to others but also to me as I strive to give witness as His Spouse. And there is nothing that could fill me with more joy as a Spouse of Christ than to know that I am under Our Lady’s protection as I go about daily carrying His sweet yoke and burden.” – Sister Elizabeth Therese of the Most Blessed Sacrament, clothed August 21, 2000
I love our holy habit and would not exchange it for all the most beautiful clothes in the world. It is an honour and privilege to have the freedom to be able to wear it. May it always be so.” – Sister Kateri of Mater Dolorosa, clothed Easter Sunday 1983
“The day of my investiture was a glorious day for me for that day I became a Bride of Christ, receiving our holy habit and our religious name.” – Sister Maria Milagros of Saint John the Evangelist, clothed January 6, 1959
“Dressed as a bride, I received my holy habit during the Investiture Mass. We left the Chapel, were assisted by our sisters and returned clothed as Carmelites…a moment I had longed for since the 3rd grade, ten years before that day.” – Sister Michelle of the Queen of Carmel, clothed January 6, 1967
“After wearing the holy habit for one year, I realise that I am not my own. Everyone who sees me is reminded that I belong to God from head to toe. Also, when they see me, they see every Carmelite Sister of the Most Sacred Heart.” – Sister Gianna of the resurrection, clothed March 25, 2013
“As the bride wears her beautiful dress as she walks toward the altar to meet her bridegroom, so we wear our habit through our journey in religious life that leads us to meet Christ Our Lord at the end of our lives taking us by the hand…forever.” – Sister Joseph Louise, clothed January 6, 1967
“One thing I love about wearing our habit is that whether I am walking down the street or walking the aisle at the store, every single person I encounter thinks of God when they see me. It might be the only thought of God they have that day! And that is what it means to be an eschatological witness…to be a walking billboard for heaven, a reminder that God wants a relationship with us FOREVER!” – Sister Marie-Aimee of the Heavenly Father, clothed March 19, 2007